On the way to Palau, along with the return trip, we had a night layover in Oahu, Hawaii. Due to the
fact that even though we were staying the night, the layovers were still short, so we spent the night as
close to the airport as possible. This meant to do anything fun, you either need to spend mucho
money on a taxi, get lost on The Bus or rent a car.
As we only had a couple of hours in the morning on the way to Palau, we decided The Bus was the
best solution to visit Waikiki. Plus, it is not like I haven't been there before or anything. We knew we
could manage. We just needed to find The Bus. To our good fortune, the bus stop to Waikiki was
literally outside of our hotel on Nimitz and the bus was actually pulling up to stop just as we were
running towards it.
After almost an hour ride, ripe exotic smells, and some interesting conversations, as you would find
on most forms of public transportation (which thankfully we were used to coming from NYC) our
toes finally hit the sand. And it feel great. After that nine hour flight, we were really in need of some
beach time even if it was only for an hour. The meaning "vacation" really started to sink in. Finally.
We spent the next hour and a half wandering along the shore of Waikiki Beach past the Royal
Hawaiian, Outrigger Hotel and Duke's Restaurant until we finally passed the Duke Kahanamoku
Statue. Then we headed inland and visited all of the ABC Stores possible so I could find my
favorite flip flops until we learned ABC Stores do not sell them anymore. By fluke, we stepped
into a gift/tourist shop to get some postcards and than had them. I was almost in tears I was so
excited. I bought the last pair with aqua straps, exactly what I wanted as I had only had a pair of
black ones left after Tucker used my other pair as a chew toy.
After we had all successfully purchased what we needed to buy we headed back towards the bus stop.
The trip back to the hotel was much faster than our ride to Waikiki. I believe bus 19 will be the bus to
take from now on! We had already packed our bags and were ready to hit the road when we got back.
We hopped on the shuttle to the airport and kissed Hawaii goodbye. I made sure to take a sleeping
pill for the flight. I was exhausted already and knew with the time change it would get even worse.
Sadly, those pills worked so well they knocked me out long enough to miss the ice cream sandwich.
Do you know the last time I had an ice cream sandwich? Yeah, neither do I! But I do know I love
them and a free one on a seven hour flight to Guam would have been really awesome. After I
realized my friends were not joking and they really did get an ice cream sandwich, I was pretty
upset. This would not happen again.
On our return flight from Guam back to Hawaii, the time change really decided to screw with us.
We left Palau at 1:45am and arrived in Guam at 5:50am... I'm not sure how that works either. I
know that when it is 1:45am in Palau it is 2:24am in Guam. Plus, the flight was only an hour and
a half. So you figure out the math, I'm still on
vacation (my mind still thinks so at least).
We arrived back in Hawaii, ice cream sandwich fed, around 6:00pm and were showered and settled
into our hotel rooms by 7:00pm. I did mention we were staying close to the airport right? Instead of
spending $35 each way on a cab, we decided to rent a car for $34 for 24 hours. So smart. We
headed back out to Waikiki and as a ritual to my best friend Shannon, we went to Duke's for
dinner. Sara and I tore apart that salad bar. After ten days with no salad, we were in desperate
need of some greens.
We finished the evening with a lovely walk on the beach. The moon was glowing orange and so low it
was looking like it was about to set in the ocean. It was a wonderful evening.
The following morning, our last day in Hawaii before our vacation would finally end, we woke up
bright and early, hopped in our awesome rental car and headed for the North Shore. It was a
little overcast and occasionally we would hit small pockets of rain clouds. Thankfully, once we
arrived, the sun began to shine and the rain went goodbye.
Our first stop of the day was Waimea Bay. We ran down to the water and stuck our feet in to cool off.
It was so nice to be back on the North Shore. You have no idea how much I miss this place.
We were all a little hungry and hit up Ted's Bakery for some breakfast before heading into Haleiwa for
a little shopping. We all made some sort of purchase. I happened to find an awesome Volcom top I had
to have. We also visited a children's store so I could pick up a little somethin somethin for baby Skib!
There were so many cute boy/girl things but as we do not know which it is yet, I tried to stay gender neutral.
Oh yeah, if you did not know, I'm going to be an Aunt. Baby Skib is due to arrive on my 30th birthday!
I also brought one of those home. Though a nice surf board would be a nice souvenir to remind me
of Hawaii. I thought it would look great on the wall over my sofa.
Obviously, I did not bring a surf board back from Hawaii but that does not mean I did not want to. Our
next stop for the day was Dole Plantation. We were all craving pineapple and knew it would be a great
Hawaiian snack. About an hour later, we all headed into the car with bags and bags of goodies from
Dole. We were high on pineapple frozen yogurt, fresh fruit and chocolate covered macadamia nuts!
Our final stop of the day was the Waikiki aquarium. It was small and we were only there a short time
but it was nice. Our favorite fish of the day, Frogfish. Yes, it was as odd looking as its name. We
grabbed some noddles before heading back towards the airport. We were all exhausted from our
busy day and ready to be on the plane asleep for the next nine hours. The next thing I knew, we
were landing in Newark. It felt great to be back but I will admit, I am still on Island Time, a little
dazed and confused. I think I'm ready for my next vacation!